Why this small Korean village gets 10 million visitors a year

More than 20 million visitors have poured onto the streets of South Korea’s Jeonju Hanok Village in the past two years, according to the city government, a startling number for a city with a population of little more than 652,000.

The village, known for its cluster of more than 800 tradition Korean houses in Jeonju, North Jeolla Province, was visited by about 10.9 million visitors last year. The figure from the previous year stood at 10.5 million, reported The Korea Herald.

Visitor figures were compiled based on telecommunication records and credit and debit card usage in the village.

Top visitors to the village were those in their 40s, followed by those in their 30s, 20s, and 50s respectively. Domestic visitors formed more than 30% of total arrivals, hailing from Seoul, Gyeonggi Province and Incheon.

Based on these latest findings, the Jeonju municipal government said it would actively push to foster the city to become a global cultural tourism destination.

This comes amid a rising trend of visitors to the village, which sharply increased since the 2000s. From 2007 to 2014, visitor numbers more than doubled from 3.17 million to 7.89 million.

The village has garnered attention since it won several tourism awards. In 2012, the village was introduced to the ‘Michelin Guide’ in France, receiving its highest rating of three stars.

Excluding Seoul, Jeonju is ranked third among major tourist cities throughout South Korea behind Jeju and Busan.

This Story, By Naomi Neoh, First Appeared on TravelWeeklyAsia


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